Britain’s Hague Urges Reforms During Burma Visit

Posted January 5th, 2012 at 2:05 am (UTC-5)
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British Foreign Secretary William Hague has arrived in Burma Thursday to urge the country's leaders to continue “on the path of reform”.

It is the first visit by the British foreign secretary to Burma in more than 50 years.

Hague is due to meet with President Thein Sein and government leaders in the administrative capital, Naypyidaw. He is expected to meet with opposition leader and Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi in Rangoon on Friday.

The foreign secretary says during his visit he will gauge what more Britain can do to support reform efforts in Burma.

Hague's visit follows that of U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who in November pledged U.S. support for Burma, if more political prisoners are released and ethnic groups are included in the political process.

Burma's new military-dominated government has implemented a series of political reforms in the past year. In addition to releasing some political prisoners, it eased press restrictions and opened dialogue with critics including Aung San Suu Kyi.